Going into the long weekend, I thought you could use some longer form stuff to read. And clearly, I’m never going to find the time to write it. So I’m going to give you someone else’s content. Like Willamette Week which just published a cover story on the current state of Oregon startups and the infrastructure that seeks to support them.
When it comes to helping people get their ideas going, there are few weekends that compare to a Techstars Startup Weekend. Fifty four hours of sprinting from idea to product and pitch. It just goes to show how quickly something can come together. And that’s why I’m always happy to hear about new and different flavors of the event. Like Techstars Startup Weekend Small Town Advantage which takes place this weekend in Independence, Oregon.
If there’s one thing founders and startups know how to handle, it’s a fire drill. Last minute requests. Crazy deadlines. Random hail marys. It’s all in a day’s work. But stepping outside of that work to help out the community? That’s above and beyond. And yet more than 80 folks took the time do that yesterday in response to a call to action from Business for a Better Portland and PIE which was designed to address a severe case of underfunding activities directed at the Oregon startup community.
Fundraising is hard. I think that’s something on which all of us can agree. Constructing grammatically correct sentences even if they seem awkward? No. Oxford commas? Probably not. But agreeing that fundraising is a grind? Yes. Definitely. And it doesn’t matter if you’re a company looking for a loan, a startup chasing venture capital, a VC chasing LPs… even an employee looking to get their budget approved. It’s all difficult.
Working on a Blockchain startup? Curious as to how the Oregon Enterprise Blockchain Venture Studio is going to work? Wondering if your company is a good fit? Well, you can get all of those questions and more answered this week. Because R/GA is hosting an information session on the Oregon Enterprise Blockchain Venture Studio.
If you know me, you know that I’m a firm believer that the accelerator model is far from played out. I see it as an educational platform that you can point at companies, people, institutions… practically anything can be “accelerated” through a combination of peer and expert mentorship. That’s why I was super excited to see that a venture studio — which has a lot in common with the accelerator model — that I’ve been eagerly awaiting is now open for business and taking startup applications. Meet the Oregon Enterprise Blockchain Venture Studio (OEBVS).
Taking inspiration from Stephen Green’s annual Black History Month celebration of black businesses in Portland, Built Oregon will be featuring women led consumer product companies from around the state during the month of March, Women’s History Month. If you’re interested in meeting some new companies and awesome founders, you should tune in.
It’s always nice to see Portland companies featured in national media. Especially when it’s folks who you know have been hard at work, building amazing companies, with little to no media recognition for what they’ve been doing. Like Walker Tracker, which was just featured in Forbes as an example of the participants in the XXcelerate Fund.